The Legal Aid Society can assist with wrongful convictions, applications for commutation and pardon, and the sealing of past criminal records.
The Wrongful Conviction Unit was created to address the population of prisoners who have exhausted all avenues of relief and are still fighting for their freedom and to clear their names of crimes they did not commit.
The Criminal Appeals Bureau prepares commutation applications for eligible clients — individuals with excellent institutional records who have served more than half of their minimum term and are more than a year away from parole eligibility. CAB also prepares pardon applications for clients who have rehabilitated themselves but are facing deportation.
The Case Closed Project helps people clear their criminal records. If you have a maximum of two convictions (one of which is a felony) that are more than 10 years old, you may be eligible to apply for sealing and representation in your application. The Project can also tell you if you are eligible for the many other types of record relief that can help to end the perpetual punishment of a conviction record.
The Exploitation Intervention Project works with trafficking survivors to help them vacate criminal convictions related to their trafficking and seal the records of those arrests. If you were convicted of a criminal offense as a result of having been sex or labor trafficked, you may be eligible to have your record sealed.
If you are innocent and have exhausted all appeals for a conviction in New York City, write to The Wrongful Conviction Unit and request our questionnaire to be considered for representation:
The Wrongful Conviction Unit
c/o The Legal Aid Society
199 Water Street
New York, NY 10038
Or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Individuals who believe they qualify for clemency should apply online with the Governor’s Office. The site contains instructions and forms for applying for commutations and pardons.
To find out if you are eligible to have a criminal record sealed call 212-298-3120 or email CaseClosed@legal-aid.org.
To find out if The Exploitation Intervention Project is able to assist you in having your trafficking-related convictions vacated and the records sealed, contact Leigh Latimer at 646-385-5025 or email@example.com.
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Last Updated: 11 June 2020
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